A symphony of chirping birds greeted guests entering the Les Arts Décoratifs mirrored carousel installation of Christian Lacroix’s Elsa Schiaparelli homage collection. The designer made and numbered 100 drawings of which 18 were produced. Each look bore some connective tissue linking it either to a specific Schiaparelli collection or to one of her motifs. Several looks referenced Schiaparelli’s circus-themed collection from 1938; one with an enormous peplum made of pockets derived from the collection featured in a March 1940 magazine editorial, “not the easiest spring in France,” Lacroix noted. There were hats by Maison Michel and jewelry by Gripoix, and a gorgeous sari-inspired green gown.
The installation is available for by-invitation viewing through Wednesday, though not to prospective clients, as there are no plans to produce or sell. Asked what would happen to the clothes post-installation breakdown at the end of the week, Lacroix responded that he didn’t know, though he and a house P.R. representative indicated the possibility of some kind of as-yet-unplanned roving exhibition. It seems that the clothes were commissioned, designed and made solely to occupy a spot on the couture calendar.